Current Trends in Disaster Law and Policy

Cambridge Handbook on Disaster Law and Policy

Foreword  “Current Trends in Disaster Law and Policy”


“…. Broader governance challenges will also need to be faced. Fragmented governance may become increasingly problematic due to more intense disaster risks. Much more needs to be done to integrate climate and disaster governance.

Moreover, the disproportionate impact of climate change on disadvantaged groups also increases the need for their participation in planning.

Yet the same factors that make disadvantaged groups more vulnerable to climate change also reduce their opportunities to be heard in disaster planning and management.

Furthermore, in mitigating disaster risks, there may be difficult tradeoffs between near-term and long-term risk reduction. And even the much ballyhooed goal of risk management — resilience — poses puzzles and requires much additional thinking and clarification…”

“…countering the tendency of existing disaster and climate policy to increase, rather than mitigate, inequity.  Additionally, given greater voice to vulnerable groups in climate change and disaster planning is critical to helping identify and mitigate the effect of planning decisions on these stakeholder groups.…”

“… We should not underestimate the difficulty of making the institutional changes needed to address these governance challenges. Institutions can have tremendous inertia that makes change difficult even when there is general agreement on its desirability. The difficulty of change is compounded when it requires shifting the current allocation of resources and power…”

Farber, Daniel A. and Sun, Lisa Grow, Foreword: Current Trends in Disaster Law and Policy (May 14, 2021). Cambridge Handbook on Disaster Law and Policy (Susan S. Kuo, John Travis Marshall & Ryan M. Rowberry, eds.) (forthcoming), BYU Law Research Paper No. 21-14, Available at SSRN: or